Directed by Hans Horn
Produced by Dan Maag, Philip Schulz-Deyle
Written by Adam Kreutner & David Mitchell
Director of Photograpy Bernhard Jasper
Music by Gerd Baumann
Cast: Susan May Pratt, Eric Dane, Richard Speight, Jr., Ali Hillis, Niklaus Lange, Cameron Richardson

2006/94 mins/Color/Dolby Digital 5.1
2.35:1 anamorphic/English/USA/NTSC Region 1

Review from Lionsgate Home Entertainment DVD

2003's OPEN WATER became an independent film success story when the shot-on-video movie with a reported budget of just over $100,000 won accolades at film festivals and then went on to earn some $30 million at the U.S. box office. Looking back, I don't think that the movie lived up to the hype, but it's easy to see why it was a success, as it combines a human survival story with the ever-popular predator, sharks. Having a hit on their hands, it isn't necessarily surprising that Lionsgate wanted a sequel to OPEN WATER. What is surprising is that they apparently picked up a German-made film called ADRIFT and slapped a new title on it. Thus, OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT was born.

OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT tells the story of a group of old friends who gather for a reunion. Married couple Amy (Susan May Pratt) and James (Richard Speight, Jr.) bring their baby daughter Sarah, and join Lauren (Ali Hillis) in wishing Zach (Niklaus Lange) a happy birthday. This group convenes on a yacht belonging to Dan (Eric Dane), which is docked in Mexico. The old friends board the yacht, meeting Dan's new girlfriend, Michelle (Cameron Richardson), and set sail, despite the fact that Amy is terrified of the water and refuses to remove her life-jacket. After a few hours of cruising and partying, the group decides to venture into the ocean for a swim -- with Dan dragging Amy into the water. However, once they are off of the boat, they immediately realize that no one remembered to lower the ladder, thus, there's no way to get back on board. The group makes some attempts to clamber onto the boat, but to no avail. Thus, they are at the mercy of the ocean, the tide, and their own frayed emotions.

In OPEN WATER, the sea was infested with sharks. In OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT, the sea is infested with morons. As with the first film, this sequel in name only is supposedly based on true events, but it's so hard to stomach the inane actions of the characters in this movie that I couldn't suspend my disbelief in this movie, much less the fact that these things happened to someone in real life. First of all, we've got to get past the idea that they would leap off of a boat without making sure that there was some way to get back on. Late in the film, OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT attempts to explain why this happened, but it never rings true. OK, let's suppose that this is possible, once the group gets into the water, their actions become too stupid for words...but I will try. As one would expect, the swimmers attempt to climb back on board the boat. However, no one ever thinks that attempting to hoist Michelle, who probably weighs 100 pounds, out of the water and onto the boat was a good idea. Even when they are able to create a tenuous way to climb back onto the boat, is lightweight Michelle sent? No, one of the heavy men makes the attempt and I don't need to tell you what happens. So, once these brainiacs go into the water, we are forced to watch them slap the side of the boat in futile attempts to get back on board.

OK, so everyone in the movie is a dumbass, but once they enter the water, the shark action begins, right? Nope. There isn't a shark to be had in this movie, and to be fair the DVD packaging doesn't promise sharks...although the title OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT makes one think that a shark may appear. I can only imagine that all of the sharks in Hollywood read the script and opted to hold out for DEEP BLUE SEA 2. (Although, to be honest, they shouldn't hold their breath for that one.) No, the only danger lurking in the ocean for these idiots are other idiots as the stress of being in the water makes the characters turn on one another. There were certainly some moments where I thought a shark was about to appear, but no such luck.

As if knowing that the story in the film was paltry, OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT commits emotional blackmail by having a 9-month old baby be one of the characters. If the baby hadn't been on board alone, I wouldn't have cared if any of these mouth-breathers got out of the water. And then we have the ending. You know how many DVDs have an alternate ending as an bonus feature? Well, OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT saved us the trouble by inserting two endings into the movie. Thus, I don't know what the hell happened at the end. All of the characters either died, or two lived, I'm honestly not sure.

It can certainly be considered sneaky that Lionsgate has given us a sequel to OPEN WATER which has nothing to do with that movie...other than the fact that some yahoos get stuck in the ocean. But, if the movie had been good, then forgiveness may have been in the cards. But, OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT is a lousy movie which features a ridiculous story and the whole idea of recommending it to anyone leaves me with a sinking feeling.

OPEN WATER 2: ADRIFT bobs onto DVD courtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment. The film has been letterboxed at 2.35:1 and the transfer is enhanced for 16 x 9 TVs. The movie was shot on film and the transfer looks good. The image is sharp and clear. There is a small smattering of grain at times, but there are no defects from the source material. The colors are good and the image has a nice depth. The only time that I noticed any serious issues were during underwater scenes, where the picture suddenly looked like streaming video. The DVD carries a Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track. This track provides clear dialogue and sound effects. The constantly splashing water is well-represented in the stereo speakers. There were a few good uses of surround sound. I noted no overt bass effects.

The lone extra on this DVD is 20-minute featurette which is labeled as "The Making of OPEN WATER 2", but the on-screen title immediately identifies it as "The Making of ADRIFT", the film's original title. This segment offers many clips from the film as well as on-location footage and comments from the cast & crew.





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Review by Mike Long. All Right Reserved. 2007. ©